Sadism is a behavioral disorder, distinguished by a pitiless, violent, manipulative, and humiliating behavior exhibited to other people. A sadist does not care about anyone around him/her and tends to gain pleasure from their harm, suffering, or humiliation. Impoliteness, indecency, and aggressiveness are common features that characterize the social relationships of a sadist.
Following are some important facts about sadism:
- Insidious patterns of maladaptive, motivated behavior are a common sign of sadism. These behavioral patterns are persistent and enduring. They become apparent before, during, or after puberty and last for several years.
- According to a recent research, a large majority, nearly 53 percent, of male sadists and sadomasochists developed a sadistic personality before the age of 15 years, while nearly 78 percent of females developed sadism after puberty.
- The exact cause of sadism is not known. However, the development of the disorder is believed to be dependent on the bringing up of an individual or an unfavorable experience during childhood. Although there is a possibility of underlying biological and genetic causes of sadism, the condition is not caused due to drug abuse or an injury under any condition.
- It exhibits a typical, nonflexible behavior pattern remains consistent in all social and personal situations, thereby worsening the social and occupational functioning of an individual.
- A sadistic individual uses physical brutality and aggressiveness in an attempt to develop a sense of authority in their relationship and gain contentment from it.
- People with extreme sadistic personalities also tend to gain pleasure by inflicting physical or psychological pain on people as well as on animals. They are highly likely to be fascinated by torture, injuries, weapons, violence, and brutalities of all kinds.
- Sadism is often closely associated with other conditions, such as masochism and depressed moods. Other disorders with similar symptoms as sadism include Paranoid PD (personality disorder), schizotypal PD, antisocial PD, Schizoid PD, and frequent personality changes.
- Sadism can be treated by a combination of various treatments, including counseling, psychotherapy, and pharmacotherapy.
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